• Brown russeted (speckled) fruit, the size of a mango.
  • Thin skin similar to a kiwi fruit but hairless.
  • Yellowish brown flesh is soft and melting and can be smooth or granular.
  • Very sweet aromatic flavour.
  • Contains up to 12 shiny black seeds.
  • Tastes of fruity brown sugar with a touch of grittiness.

The tree is an attractive, upright, slow growing evergreen. The crown is dense, rounded, but sometimes pyramidal or open and somewhat irregular in shape. Height is usually in the vicinity of 12-30 metres from seed, and 6-15 metres from grafted cultivars.

Sapodillas are a refreshing addition to any cheese or fruit platter or served lightly poached with whipped cream.

Sapodillas grow well in a wide range of climatic conditions, from wet tropics to cool and dry subtropics within 30° north and south of the equator and at altitudes up to 1000m within 12° of the equator. The tree does perform best however, in a warm tropical climate with 1000-2000mm of rain annually. Young trees like some shade protection whereas older plants require full sun. Best growth is found in well drained soil with regular watering however, it is resistant to dry periods.

Fruit develop slowly over a period of 7-9 months. Seedlings take 8-12 years to come into bearing, but many may never fruit at ail due to pollen sterility. Cultivars propagated by grafting or by cuttings will fruit in 2-4 years.

Grafted varieties in their third year may produce up to 4kg of fruit while mature trees may yield up to 3000 fruit in one year. Yield varies enormously between varieties.

The sapodilla is native to the Central Americas from Mexico to Venezuela. Since 1975 there have been several cultivars imported into Australia, but production here is in its early stages and local data is still limited.

Botanical Name: Manilkara zapota (Sapotaceae)

Health Benefits

Sapodilla is an energy food, high in carbohydrates.

100g of Sapodilla yields the following:

  • Calories – 83
  • Total Carbs – 7% of DV
  • Protein – 0.44g
  • Dietary Fibre – 21% of DV
  • Vitamin A – 1% of DV
  • Vitamin C – 24% of DV
  • Calcium – 2% of DV
  • Iron – 4% of DV

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Selecting tips

Select plump, firm fruit, light yellow/brown in colour. Fruit are ripe when they yield to gentle pressure at the stem end.

Storage: Ripen at room temperature and store in the refrigerator crisper for a short time.

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